Feed Deer in Backyard

What to Feed Deer in Backyard To Attract Them to Your Home

One of the reasons many people love nature is that it helps us be relaxed, calm, and happy as we enjoy all those beautiful scenes of beauty. To top this feeling, imagine seeing a deer in your backyard. It is always enchanting because that lovely animal completes the picture.

If you are looking to attract deers to your backyard, your best bet is to place water around your yard, provide feed for them in a feeder, feeds like oat, legumes, and food mixes, but do not feed them your everyday human food or meats because they have difficulty processing these foods.

You should also put a salt lick near the Woody side of your backyard. Despite how good it will feel to have deer around you, you must remember that there are downsides to having deer in your backyard; for one, they will ravage your garden and poop on your lawn. But we believe it’s worth having deers in your yard.

Is It Such A Good Idea To Feed Deer?

It is really good to feed deer, especially in the cold winter months when their natural foods are scarce. Here are a few rules you must keep in mind as you attempt to feed deer in your backyard.

These rules are important because deers are wild animals, and so you have to apply caution dealing to avoid unpleasant experiences. Here are a few tips on how to feed deer with the right kind of foods that we have enumerated earlier:

1. Firstly, people usually don’t offer the right food to deer, and they sometimes forget that deer are wild animals who should be handled with care.

2. Feeding deer should not be a one-off thing; it should be something you do from when the deer food is scarce till spring or whenever they can find food.

3. You might be tempted to feed deers with your human food or scraps, but that is a bad idea because such foods are not healthy for them.

4. You should not place the feed for the deer in one area alone; it will quickly teach the predators (such as wolves, coyotes, and even bears) where you and the deer are. If these predators ever find out where you constantly keep feed for deers, they will overrun your space. So keep deer feed in places where the deer predator cannot easily find them. If you have dogs, they can become predators themselves and start hunting the deer.

5. If your house is close to a road, then the best place you should place the deer feed is far from the road to prevent the deer from having accidents.

6. Lay out the food at dawn and dusk because this is when deers are very active.

7. To prevent competition amongst deer and even other animals, you must put out as much food as possible. It is a commonplace to see deer compete with others for nourishment; you can stop the silent behavior that might ensure by leaving enough food to go round for the deers.

8. If you love to watch deers visit your yard from time to time, then be ready for some damage to your landscape and fences. These deer might even eat your choice flower and plants because they cannot differentiate which is their food and white his not; once anything is edible, they will eat.

What to Feed Deer in Backyard To Attract Them to Your Home

Feed Deer in Backyard

Deers are known as ‘Concentrate Selectors’ because they have a small reticulorumen in relation to body size and selectively browse trees and shrubs. They are ruminators too, which eat very fast, especially if it is succulent leaves and stem, they afterward they chew their cud.

Deers are seasonal eaters too, but not by choice but rather because their food is different in different seasons. Below are some of the foods that deers eat in the dark:

1. Mast

This is the second most important component of a deer’s diet; it includes acorns, nuts, and fruits. They are the fuel of energy and are so important for deer’s well-being.

Deers eat a lot of mast during months with low temperatures, especially when developing their antlers. Mulberries, grapes, plums, and blackberries are great for deer, especially when they are growing up; during fall, then you can give them apples and pears because, at this time, they are trying to store fat for the winter.

Exotic nuts are not to be given to deer; give them acorns and chestnuts because they are the most important nuts in a deer’s diet.

2. Browse

Deer love to eat young trees and shrubs, which is called ‘browse’; this constitutes the major part of a deer’s diet.

3. Grass

People believe that grass is the best diet for deer, but in reality, deers will only go for grass when they are young because, at that stage of their life, it is the easiest food they can digest and secondly.

After all, the grass is easily the most common food you find around. Deer will only resort to eating grass if there is no other better alternative.

4. Cereals

This is a very common food that deer live to eat, but they can manage some varieties of cereals that have been grown to be fit for deer consumption.

Rye, oats, and wheat are very common cereals that deers will eat. These are simple diets that are too expensive that you can easily feed the deer that comes to your yard. They are rich in carbohydrates and fiber in a very balance ratio, meaning they will make a great meal for deer.

5. Legumes

This is not a common food type for deer, unlike other food groups, probably because this food class is expensive, but they are a good diet for deer because deer easily digest them. Black-eyed peas, soybeans, and purple hulled peas are some of the common legumes that deers enjoy.

6. Ready-made Food Mixes for Deer

There is already compounded feed that is in the market for feeding deer. This formulated feed usually comprises feed ingredients like molasses, soybeans, corn, alfalfa, oats, vitamins, and minerals.

This feed contains the right kind of feed material in the balance ratio that is good for deer, and they can come in pellet form. The protein content of these feeds is usually about 12%, which means you should watch out for this while buying this type of feed.

If you cannot find this type of feed for deer around, you are free to feed these deers with ready-made mixes meant for rabbits, goats, and horses; the deer will still do ‘just fine”.

What Not to Feed Deer

1. Animal Remains

It is never advisable to feed deer with animal remains, be it cooked or raw; this is because they are not carnivores. Secondly, you might be introducing diseases present in the animal remains to the deer. So it is a big No-No feeding any animal remains to a deer.

2. Human Food or Food Scrap From Your Table

Many people think that a nice way of disposing of their leftovers is to feed them to other animals. This might work for dogs and cats, but not for deers.

Because deers are different from pigs, cattle, and other animals that can eat some of the food scraps from your kitchen, deers are not one of such animals because they cannot process such foods.

3. Corn

You might be surprised to see corn among the kind of food that deer can’t eat because it is a common food that such animals eat.

But corn has a relatively high acid content, and this acid can kill some of the beneficial microorganisms in the deer’s stomach if deers eat a lot of corn. So if you must feed that deer with corn, let it be a small quantity.

4. Hay

This is another surprising feed that makes it to the ban-list of feed for deers. Deers hate hay because they cannot digest not process it.

There are cases in which deers ate hay that remains unprocessed and undigested in their stomach, and yet they died of starvation, so feeding hay to deer is like giving them something toxic.

How To Attract Deer to Your Backyard

Feed Deer in Backyard

There are a few things you can do that will bring deer around your yard, and they include:

1. Provide a Source of Water for Them

This is one of the basic things you can do to attract deers to your space. You can place a plastic pool or a stone birdbath around your yard, and deers will always return to it because they will usually go back to a place where they have plenty of freshwaters to drink.

However, you should not place the water too close to the house so that you don’t scare them with your presence. Secondly, they might cause some damage as they move around drinking water.

2. Set Up Some Mineral Blocks in Your backyard

Deers need a lot of minerals to go anywhere they find mineral blocks. They need this mineral fir the growth of their antler and for a healthy lactation process.

3. Ensure that your backyard is quiet and calm

This is because it is common knowledge that deers are very excitable and nervous animals and will bolt whenever they feel frightened.

They hate loud noise, and so if you keep your backyard quiet and serene, you are creating an environment they will love to visit always.

4. Remove the fences of your property

This is a little too extreme, but if you desperately want deer to gain access to your backyard, you might consider living in a house without a fence.

The fence is a restriction that keeps them out even if they are attracted to your backyard, so if you want deers visiting you now and then, then get rid of your fence.

5. Don’t install bright lights

The same way loud noises repel deers, to do very bright lights. Bright light can signify the presence of a predator or danger to deers, and because they are very skittish animals, they will steer clear from places that are too bright.

6. Put out a salt lick for them

Putting a salt lick will lure deers to your backyard because they love salt. They can smell the salt from far and do all they can to get to it no matter how far the place is. The beauty of this is that deers will always return to the place once they have discovered you’ve got salt to spare.

7. Plant Flowers, Trees, and Grasses that Deer love

You can plant different kinds of plants that deer love to attract them to your backyard. You can plant shrubs and trees like red oak, white oak, crab apples, persimmons, and honey locust in your backyard or grasses like Bluegrass, Fescue, and ferns which deers love.

8. Apply Deer Urine Around Your Property

Gunter has used the urine of deers to attract deers’ direction hunting so that it will work perfectly well in your backyard.

The deer urine is a deer attractant that gives off a familiar scent that makes other deer more comfortable coming close. This urine makes your backyard smell like their natural habitat, so they will want to come in.

The Kind Of Deer You Might See

There are 3 main kinds of bear you will find around your home if you stay in North America, and they are:

1. White-Tailed Deer

These deer are found in Canada, the United States, Mexico, and other places. Their characteristic trait is the white underside of their tails.

These deer are generally reddish-brown in color or bluish-grey. They weigh about 200 pounds, while their antlers can be up to 16 feet, while they can grow up to 7 feet in length from head to tailor.

2. Black-Tailed Deer

This species of deers are found mostly in California and along the Pacific coast, and even in Alaska. They are distinguishable by their black tail, and they are typically around 150 to 200 pounds.

Their antlers start growing at around 8 months old while they shed their velvet once the antlers are fully developed during adulthood, but the female Black-tailed deer do not have antlers.

3. Mule Deer

This is the largest of the three deers; they are generally reddish-brown or bluish-gray, depending on the season. During summer, their coats lean towards a reddish color, while in the winter, they become pale. They wear between 130 and 330 pounds, a d they gave the characteristic large ear and a creamy whitetail.


Deers are lovely animals to behold, and there are a few simple things you can do to attract them to your backyard: from providing food, water, and salt lick to keeping bright light and loud sounds from your space. When you do these, you are sure to see one of the three common species of deer.

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We trust this article helped you learn what to feed deer in the backyard to attract them to your home. You may also want to check if Deer Poop is Bad for Your Lawn.

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